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How many net carbs are in shrimp scampi?

Shrimp scampi is a delicious Italian-American dish that typically consists of shrimp sautéed in garlic, butter, and white wine. It’s often served over linguine or spaghetti. While shrimp scampi is relatively low in carbs compared to pasta or bread, many people on low-carb or keto diets wonder exactly how many net carbs are in a serving of shrimp scampi.

Net carbs refer to the total carbohydrates in a food minus the fiber and sugar alcohols. Fiber and sugar alcohols are indigestible, so they don’t count toward your daily carb intake on low-carb diets like keto. By subtracting fiber and sugar alcohols from total carbs, you get the net carbs, which is the number you want to keep track of.

The number of net carbs in shrimp scampi can vary greatly depending on the specific ingredients and portion sizes. Factors like the type of pasta, amount of pasta versus shrimp, and any added ingredients like breadcrumbs or flour will affect the carb count. Luckily, there are easy ways to modify traditional shrimp scampi recipes to be lower in carbs.

Net Carbs in Shrimp

Let’s start by looking at the main protein component of shrimp scampi – the shrimp itself:

Serving Size Total Carbs Fiber Net Carbs
3 oz (85g) shrimp, cooked 1g 0g 1g

As you can see, shrimp on their own are very low in carbohydrates and contain zero fiber. A 3 oz serving of cooked shrimp has just 1g of net carbs. This makes shrimp a keto-friendly protein source.

Net Carbs in Pasta

Traditional shrimp scampi recipes call for linguine or spaghetti pasta. Of course, pasta is high in carbohydrates, with a substantial portion coming from net carbs:

Serving Size Total Carbs Fiber Net Carbs
1 cup cooked spaghetti 43g 2g 41g
1 cup cooked linguine 44g 2g 42g

One cup of cooked spaghetti or linguine contains over 40g net carbs, which would use up almost all of your daily carb allowance on keto. Limiting your portion size to 1/4 or 1/2 cup pasta can help reduce carb intake.

Net Carbs in Other Shrimp Scampi Ingredients

Beyond shrimp and pasta, traditional shrimp scampi recipes include ingredients like butter, olive oil, garlic, lemon, white wine, and parsley. These ingredients are very low in carbohydrates:

Ingredient Serving Size Total Carbs Fiber Net Carbs
Butter 1 tbsp 0g 0g 0g
Olive oil 1 tbsp 0g 0g 0g
Garlic 1 clove 1g 0g 1g
Lemon juice 1 tbsp 1g 0g 1g
White wine 1 oz 1g 0g 1g
Parsley 1 tbsp chopped 0g 0g 0g

Garlic, lemon juice, and white wine contribute negligible net carbs in typical serving sizes. Herbs like parsley are zero carb. The fats from butter and olive oil are also zero net carb.

Net Carbs in Breadcrumb Toppings

Some shrimp scampi recipes call for topping the dish with breadcrumbs before baking. Since breadcrumbs come from bread, they can add a significant number of net carbs:

Serving Size Total Carbs Fiber Net Carbs
1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs 19g 1g 18g
1/4 cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs 18g 2g 16g

A 1/4 cup serving of breadcrumbs adds around 15-20g net carbs. To make shrimp scampi lower carb, opt for a breadcrumb-free recipe.

Net Carbs in Flour Coatings

Some recipes coat shrimp in flour before sautéing. All-purpose flour contains about 20g net carbs per 1/4 cup serving. To avoid this extra carb load, choose recipes that skip the flour coating.

How to Make Shrimp Scampi Lower Carb

Here are some simple substitutions to reduce the net carbs in shrimp scampi:

– Use “zoodles” instead of pasta. Zucchini noodles or other vegetable noodles make a great pasta substitute.

– Try cauliflower rice instead of pasta. Riced cauliflower contains under 5g net carbs per cup.

– Skip the breadcrumb topping. A keto-friendly alternative is crushed pork rinds.

– Avoid flour coatings on the shrimp. Stick to just shrimp seasoned with salt, pepper, and garlic.

– Limit your portion size of pasta to 1/4 or 1/2 cup. Load your plate up with extra shrimp and vegetables instead.

– Choose whole wheat or high fiber pasta varieties. These have slightly fewer net carbs than regular white pasta.

Making these swaps helps reduce the total net carbs substantially while still delivering the classic flavors of shrimp scampi.

Net Carbs in a Low Carb Shrimp Scampi Recipe

Here’s an example breakdown of net carbs for a keto-friendly shrimp scampi recipe:

Ingredient Serving Net Carbs
Shrimp 6 oz 3g
Olive oil 1 tbsp 0g
Garlic 2 cloves 2g
Lemon juice 1 tbsp 1g
White wine 2 oz 2g
Parsley 1 tbsp 0g
Butter 1 tbsp 0g
Zucchini noodles 1 cup 4g
Totals 12g

As you can see, using zucchini noodles instead of pasta helps keep the net carbs to around 12g total for a reasonable 6 oz serving. This makes it easy to fit shrimp scampi into a low carb diet.


Traditional shrimp scampi recipes can contain over 40g net carbs from the pasta alone. However, with some simple low carb swaps like using vegetables instead of pasta, you can enjoy shrimp scampi on a keto diet. Focus on increasing the ratio of shrimp to pasta, limiting any breadcrumb toppings, and choosing lower carb vegetables. This allows you to get a reasonable serving of shrimp scampi for under 15g net carbs. So go ahead and satisfy that shrimp craving without going over your carb limit!